Contributors to this thread:
I am 71 and planning my next elk hunt. I started bowhunting in Ohio at 20 years old. I have shot many different bows in my lifetime and won many tournaments including Ohio state target archery. I now live in Colorado and have taken a handful of elk with my bow and have packed some on my own. I am still good physical shape, never overweight, and can still shoot straight. I even climbed Pagosa Peak a few days ago, which is almost 13,000.
Is anyone else still elk hunting in their 70's?
Yea, last year solo elk hunted for 25 days in the Flat Tops at the age of 77. Will be out there again this season but a year older. Seventy eight is the NEW Fifty. Well it is to me.
Glad you see you out there getting it done. my best, Paul
My hero, Paul Navarre! 78 I believe and his story is very similar to yours!
Looks like we were posting at the same time, Paul. Hope to see you in a couple weeks!
I'll bring a little smoother whiskey this time. :-)
Hey NIck, and we are both from Ohio. Must be something in the water. my best, Paul
PS, I hear you will be in Ft. Collins shortly, and might be joining us for a local elk fest.
You guys give me hope! inspirational to this 63 year-old elk hunter! LaGriz
Paul is always an inspiration!
I plan to be in another 13 years!
This will be my first elk hunt at 70 I have two hunts lined up a Montana Breaks hunt and a unit 6b hunt in Az
72 in 2017 AZ bull.
I have three friends (age 75) from different back grounds who are 10 years older than me and still at it. I follow their lead as to staying in the game via their diet, exercise and training regiments. Most of it revolves around staying fit by reducing your weight a few pounds each year. No hard impact stuff any more, just walk up and down hills.
Staying on the porch when the youngins leave for the hunt is an event I'm going to fight as long as possible.
That said sometimes I think I hunt to avoid doing something worthwhile with my life:)
I agree Charlie, Yesterday I mt. biked 22 miles and then today hiked in the foot hills with a 25# back pack for 3 miles. Tomorrow is my day off but I am going kayak trout fishing and then the next day, do a mt hike to find elk. My weight is 10 more pounds than playing foot ball HS, in 1958. --now 185#.
My advise is stay strong and then keep moving forward, one foot at a time. (ok, throw in a large amount of passion for the out of doors) my best, Paul
PS. Good for all you guys and are maturing faster than you ever thought, 20 years ago.
One other ingredient is having an understanding wife with an appetite for wild game.
Oh, by the way, don’t smoke don’t drink.
Last year at 73 I shot a P&Y mule deer and a decent elk in Nevada. My wife also shot a P&Y mule deer. Followed that up with an unsuccessful Sitka blacktail hunt in Alaska. My wife and I always have annual physical exams. This year our doctor retired and the new one wanted a good baseline for all of our tests. As a result of a stress test they found an artery that was severely blocked. Two stents later I'm doing fine. The doctor said no heart damage, so I was very fortunate and thankful to God for that. The bottom line is get your annual checkups so you can keep on chasing those bulls.
you guys give me hope, 13 years to go
Be 72 in November heading to Az in September looking forward to it.This after cardiac ablation in June anytime I feel a little rough working out I think ?? of Paul Good luck get a big one and enjoy Lewis
I I am right there with you guys....75 and NOT counting !!...I must admit I do look forward to water hole/wallow blinds more than before !!
and only 500 yards to the truck on flat ground
and only 500 yards to the truck on flat ground
Joe, I am with you,always looking forward to setting quietly on the ground or in a tree stand in Nebraska for WT after busting my butt during the Colorado elk season.
First of all, awesome bull, Terry! Second of all, Paul, you are an inspiration and I enjoy your stories! I'll be pushing 72 hard this coming elk season. Will have the whole season to play. I hunt solo and live in a spike camp for the month eating and traveling light. been doing this for many years. Actually, I agreed to guide for two hunts this year. Something for variety. Work out regular back here in Minnesota. Climb hills for a couple miles 4 or 5 days a week at a local ski hill. Get knee or hip injections on occasion. Not yet a candidate for replacement. Always busy. Live for my Fall in the mountains of Colorado. Actually out there 3 or 4 times a year. Just livin the dream since I retired a little over 12 years ago. Oh, and I have no bad habits, other than one little one - I lie a little.
I will be 71 early this September. I sure plan to be out on my birthday and beyond. I have to work harder at 70 than I did at 50 to stay in shape. Some things don't work as well, but it is not a big problem.
Great Work! You are all an inspiration to this old 50 year old!
Very impressive guys! I wish you all good health and success this fall!
Great to see! Paul is a finely-tuned machine. He is what everyone hopes to be at 65, a decade and a half past that. Yikes!
Be 73 this October. Planning on going along on bow hunt with friend. Have Oct hunt for deer and elk. On a banana but loving it.
Nice! you guys are setting the bar for the rest of us slackers... 62 this year and I figured I would start spending my hard saved $$$ on guided hunts after 70, but you have me rethinking that. I hope I feel as good as you guys look at 70+...
Paul, As stated you are an inspiration. How do you get your pack on with the recurve strapped along side?
I think if a person maintain your work outs, eat well, do not do anything in excess like booze ect Age turns into just another number.
Enjoy and live smart.
Good for you Paul
Awesome stuff. Great work guys!
Not yet, but sure hope I am!
Yes sir, I love seeing threads as this especially as I get older, I hope I can follow right behind you guys, congrats on still putting in your time & getting it done!
Stoved up this year with surgery. Hope to be in Idaho, next season.
Just a youngster at 75 :^}
Approaching 71 and have a couple elk hunts planned but nothing like what Paul does. It's the packing that's getting to be a problem. Packed half of one and a quarter of the other last fall and it wasn't too bad but I limit my range.
Hip on one side and knee on the other are issues. Turned down a chance to guide a young guy last fall. Just didn't seem right to be hobbled by your guide.
Paul looks like a young 50.
Inspirational. Good to see this thread. Loved hearing Paul on kifarucast. If you haven't heard it yet you should check it out.
You guys are badasses for keeping at it.
as others have said, you older guys are an inspiration to us younger guys. i'm 57 and just hope i'm still able to chase whitetails and turkeys at 70.
Last year was my only time out, the doctors had to fix my heart, but back at it..... I am 68 this year, and plan on hunting a long time. The burn in the belly, will always be there
This is the stuff I like to read or listen to. My dad used to tell me when I was a kid that you'll learn more from listening than talking. You guys still getting it done, congratulations and keep coming with the tips and your experiences. Happy Hunting!
I am planning on being in Colorado next year. I am retiring in May 2019. That will be the end of school at the university. My only problem is the wife. But, I have been showing her the SPOT. She has been reading up on it. She likes it. Not sure if I should get the SPOT or the SPOT X. I do know this, as we get older. We tend to do things with a purpose, not run and gun.
I ain't an elk hunter, but Paul is still my hero. There's enough of him to go around. Congrats to all you guys my age that still elk hunt. I ain't fit to hold your beer !
Glad I read this thread. 53 with 2 fresh stents, one in widow maker, and wondering what the future holds. Elk hunting has meant so much to me, and the thought of never hunting the high country has been awful. You, who are still at it past 70, are an inspiration.
Anyone over 70 hunting elk is an inspiration. Lot of guys give it up and turn to fishing or golf!
I suck at golf but can still fish decent but elk brings a lot to the table in more ways than one good luck ?? all Lewis
You guys are amazing great inspiration!!
lewis and I will be the old guys in 6B this year
I will be 70 next and have a Ca Antelope tag, 2 CA deer tags, An AZ Archery tag, a CO Deer tag in my pocket. I was lucky in the draws this year and I'm trying to figure out timing for an OTC Deer hunt in Idaho. I ride my fat tire bike for my cardio and living in the Sierras gives my legs a workout. Do it while you can, tomorrow is not guaranteed.
Great thread. I'm half the age of most posters on this thread, yet somehow I can't help but think a number would put me to shame on the mountain. Here's to many more years for you guys!
On another note, it was raining this morning, so I didn't go on my early Sunday morning pack hike. I decided to make a cup of coffee, and get on Bowsite instead. Even worse, it was a lazy man's cup of coffee on the Keurig. ;^) Something makes me think a guy like Paul would have just gone ahead and got it done.
Bowboy, lol, so true!
Good luck Lewis & Danny!
Corey, one of my favorite sayings is "If I'd known I was going to live this damn long I'd have taken a lot better care of myself".
Corey, interesting insight about getting it done. Here it is Sunday morning at 7:18 am and I am trying to figure if I should peddle the bike two miles to the gym (opens at 8 ), work out and then bike back home OR just go for a 5 mile hike with Chase the wonder dog. One thing I have noticed over the many years, is that my body NEEDS and DEMANDS exercise and I feel real guilty when I do not do it on a very regular/daily basic. Almost like a drug, I got to have it /do it!
When I move to Colorado (age 51) I knew I had at least 20 years of elk hunting guaranteed. ( a huge part and a huge incentive in my life) Well that 20 years went very fast and was over 7 years ago, so now I take one year at a time and try to keep in the best mental and physical shape I can so I can still continue to elk hunt ( deer, pronghorn, turkey, ducks, geese, fish, etc) and be a good member of my family.
I have been losing too many of my friends lately, many younger than me, and if that is not a great incentive to keep living/breathing, and enjoying life, I do not know what it is.
This is a very good thread and I can only hope it might open a few eyes on the importance of life and the many challenges that will be thrown one's way. Staying in good shape will surely help one to navigate the path.
The Bike/Gym it is. my best, Paul
Great examples for all of us! I will be lucky to be walking at 70, but plan to go as long as possible. Switching to NM from the NW has helped (can't do big mountains anymore). Good luck to all.
Franzen, For some reason I imagine Paul drinks his coffee differently than most of us. I think he put some coffee beans in his mouth, chewes them up real fine and then washes it all down with warm water.
Actually the only coffee I may drink is a decaf coffee mocha from Starbucks once a week, extra pump, no foam, no whip cream, extra hot. I take a book to read and then watch out for Yoga Pants. Hey, I can look, can't I ? :) So yea, "drinks his coffee differently than most of us". It is all about the journey ,------- well, sort of like elk hunting or just like, life in general.
Elk hunting the high country at 70 is badass....just left the beach at Lake Huron (Michigan) sad how many are fat, I mean real fat. From my travels out west seems people there are the fittest for sure.
I can see myself still hunting beyond 70 - just few years to go. I can also see a lot more elk walking away from the encounters. It's just the best time of my life, still. As so many say - the hunting part is fun, but the harvesting part can really suck. I recall a former partner taking a big bull about 5 miles in, the day I went home to see my son's first football game. It was an exceptionally hot year. It took him 3-4 days to get it out, by himself. By the smell of it when he got back home, the last two days were wasted. I helped him cut it up, but politely declined to take any of the meat ;). That smell still haunts me... There ain't enough seasoning in the world to cover THAT up!
ColoBull. I'm not disappointed at all when I come home empty handed. Actually, I'm a little relieved that I don't have to deal with a dead animal. I'm disappointed when I don't have multiple close encounters. Getting that heart rate up is where I am at.
Paul you sir gets my upmost respect your discipline speaks volumes I salute you now if I can get my ducks in a row which I have been doing pretty good by the way hopefully I’ll be keeping on close to what you are achieving.Good luck all Lewis
Great inspiration guys! And here I am worrying already that I’m running out of time at 45!
Paul, my lab is named "Chase"..... he is only 62lbs, but he is a grouse and woodcock machine, but gets to hunt all the time......
The difference with the age at 70, is we are all retired, no hurry on the hunt, when I feel like taking a nap, I take one...... I am a year away from that age,,,, ha ha
I also take precautions on where I hunt, how the game is coming out, and arrangements made when necessary,,,,, we owe to the game we kill.............
I am very satisfied with a nice fat cow, and good meat,,,,,,
been chasing elk since '86. this year will be my first at 70.
I’m a young 67. Have not hunted elk in years, because I have been after moose, big bears and other stuff. I sure think I will hunt elk again, and in to my 70s.
I’m 40 and I bet Paul could whoop me on a mountain hike. Hats off to you Paul!
Paul and I went up Friday afternoon, pitched a tent and did some scouting for elk. Came back yesterday after hiking 5 miles between 9k-10k+.
A real pleasure way to spend the day.
Not chasing Elk anymore but many, many, adventures in my past (over 30 trips). My last was at 68 I think. My knees are definitely shot & I attribute that to Mile & half mile track + cross country (school years) & 8 years of Military (Navy/Marines & Army) + 32 years heavy, tough steel mill job. These are things that make a difference in our lives physically & maybe unfortunate accidents or disease. Otherwise, I still enjoy a 28 field round up & down hills, 3-Ds & plenty of hunting other game (Deer, Antelope, Hogs). 15 States & 2 Canadian provinces, so I've humped a ton of hills & mountains. Oh, 2 adult kids bowhunting & 15 grandkids (2 thru 28) with 4 involved in archery helps to. I'll be 77 this Nov..
Paul, I don’t think I’ve ever seen you without a smile on your face. Proof positive that a great attitude goes a long way! Between Brad and yourself, the elk don’t stand a chance!
My dad hunted elk with a bow up until three seasons ago when he was put out of commission from a stroke. He was 77. He killed his last elk at the age of 75.
Just got back from one of my elk hunts last night. Spent over a weeks time at high elevation, with some bulls. Had a great time and got a few shots. Here's a bull I shot just yesterday, on my way home.
Have a great bowhunt. BB
That's a great bull Bill thanks for posting.
Looking forward to another fun filled season. Elk, antelope and two states for whitetail @ 79+.
73 this year and heading to Wyoming.
Got some help on tap to help pack- that's more important than it used to be.
You guys are all truly inspiring, very cool that your still chasing elk around the hills!
I admire you guys. I'm turning 62 soon and still race a road bicycle which take a ton of training. Hard work but a big part of that is keeping myself fit so I can hunt well into my Golden years. Paul is correct when he states that he "needs" the exercise and that after working out for years, you body just has to have it. Love the endorphins.
That's what you guys are!
Thanks for posting up!
I'm still inspired by Paul and I'm going to be 80 this October. The man is a "Beast" who can only be truly appreciated by someone near his age. While I'm still trying to hunt elk in easier ways than I once did, l don't come close to what he does. l humbly take my hat off to him. Best of luck to all you old guys............Badbull
You older guys are inspiring. I'm glad my wife doesn't come onto Bowsite. I'm 55 and keep telling her I need to go on as many physical mountain hunts as I can while I still am able. She might call BS if she found out I might have another 25 years :).
At 66 I'm a youngster. Still going strong but having problems since most of my friends are starting to hang it up. Seems like all my new hunting partners are in there 30's. Good thing is they knock down the snow ahead of me:)
You guys need to follow my 88 yr old father over the mountains this fall!!
This is a great thread. I don't get on here much, but since I'm going to CO for my sixth solo elk hunt next month, figured I'd see what's up. I turn 57 in Sept. and I don't feel so old after reading these comments. Thanks for the inspiration.
Every evening I spend time on my Air Dyne on my deck its getting better every day but I still have a month to go coming along but not as fast as 10 years ago. 70 is not for sissys
I'm a tweener at 62....... the hills are a bit steeper, staying in some kind of shape a bit more work...... but too young to get any old guy sympathy...... =D
I keep thinking I'm closing in on Paul...... he just keeps pulling away every year it seams. I've said it for years and mean it with all due respect...... when I grow up I want to be like Paul.....
Sometimes you have to pace yourself-- packing 1/3 of a boned out cow. Only 95# but had a blown out knee.
Sometimes you have to pace yourself-- packing 1/3 of a boned out cow. Only 95# but had a blown out knee.
Yep, Paul is an inspiration and gracious too.
Bike pic was 2 years ago. Others are older but telling .......
Wow you all are truly amazing. It's guys like yourselves that are the foundation of this great country. You all truly inspire me and I look forward to hopefully being as blessed as you guys some day and taking along my grandkids in the woods. I'm 35 have 3 sons but I know it's coming quicker than we realize. If any of you ever draw a NM tag and need a hand it would be a honor to be your pack mule. Great thread and would be awesome to hear how you have adjusted your hunt tactics over the years. Keep it up. Amazing!!
Barrera, To answer your question concerning "adjustments". I came to Colorado to live at the age of 51 and to bow hunt elk, etc. I had been in the State to hunt twice before. The first fifteen years of elk hunting I did a lot of hiking and scouting. Not so much anymore as I rely on some of those older spots. Hunting the Flat Top Wilderness Area for the past few years expanded my hunting areas and if I was to continue to solo elk hunt I needed to be prepared mentally and physically. I have ALWAYS been sort of a jock and continue to train to be in physical shape and be as strong as I can without over doing it. It really is about being strong and being confident in one's self. If I was not confident, I might have given up a long time ago but here we are today, still going after the pot of gold. I personally like the challenge of solo hunting as it makes me rely only on myself to get the job accomplished; so one develops skills to do that.
When I moved to Colorado at the age of 51, I stated, " I have 20 good years to elk hunt, OH BOY!". Well that 20 years went by quickly so now I take one year at a time and every year, I ask myself, "am I ready and am I still confident in my abilities". So far, so good.
So how have I adjusted my hunt tactics over the years? It is still, just one foot in front of the other, on the flat or going up hill. Maybe the flats are not as long or the hills not as steep or the steps are not a quick, but I am just as excited about this coming season (pronghorn, elk, deer, turkeys, ducks, pheasants, geese) as I was years ago, so the excitement has not left me, the passion has not left me, the desire and the accumulative hunting skills have not left me and I refuse to give up.
So enjoy your sons, your family and your life, as the time will surely go quickly. And then now and in the future, continue to re-access your passions in life, and ask your self, " am I ready for another year----really ready for all of the challenges life with present to me".
Wait!, I thought I heard an elk bugle, ----got to go!
my best, Paul
Awesome. I will keep that phrase"am I ready for another yr" with me in my later years. Keep us posted on your hunts and be safe.
63 and probably in the best shape of my adult life. That said, I’m wiser these days and won’t push beyond what is wise. I’ll ek Hunt as long as I can!
Question for all of you. Do you still pack your Elk out solo? I am going to be 60 this year and should draw AZ and curious about this.
I’m 68 and yes, I still pack my elk out solo. If it weren’t for a quality pack frame and my trekking poles, it wouldn’t be possible. That said, regardless of age, you need to make sure you’re in great shape, both physically and mentally.
I’ve elk hunted the past three years. I’ll turn 71 in three weeks. I have an elk hunt starting Sept 15 this fall and sure plan the same in 2023 and beyond. Been bowhunting since 1978.
I'm still a youngster at 57, but I packed mine out this year solo. Some conditions must be met for me to be able to still pull this off.
Two trekking poles as mentioned above.
A frame that's up to the task.
And most importantly a shorter distance (1.25 miles) than what I used to do when I was a young buck ( 2 miles and more ).
And after having two stents placed, I won't consider putting the strain on myself unless I'm in good enough condition. I begin working out about 6 months before sept.
HFlier, I’m 61 and can no longer pack an elk out solo, but primarily because of shoulder strap pressure on my pacemaker. But two bulging discs in lower back don’t help either. If it weren’t for those I’d still be packin. But instead I need to plan ahead accordingly.
HFlier, depending on the unit, AZ shouldn't be too bad for a pack out. Not from personal experience but from all I've heard, most units are relatively flat and you'll never be too far from a road.
Hope to find out myself this year! :-)
Very impressive, archery elk hunting isn't easy at any age. Keeping yourself in shape physically and mentally are key to all of it. IMO. But the guys still doing it at 70+ is inspiring!
I limit myself on how far I go (1 mile downslope or easy ground, or 1/2 mile up a 30%-40% up climb) from my truck, but at age 74 I can still pack out an elk on my own. In 2020 I packed out my elk solo, but in 2021 I had my cousin with me. I will use help if it is available. I do not plan to retire from elk hunting anytime soon.
Be 70 in a couple days..hunt CO/ Utah..let a small rack legal bull walk at 12 yards in a wallow in hopes the big one with it would give me a shot..ate tag soup but had a great season in the high country...
I hope to go this year and will be 72...missed last year due to partner's illness, first time in 15 years. I need to start earlier this year getting in shape. Hardest part of my hunt is the 28 hour drive getting out there. Best of luck to all of you no matter the age.
Yes, I still pack out elk solo, boned off and leap-frog loads @ 67....... I'll be 68 in 6 weeks.
Year-round, dang near daily, if possible, workouts and maintaining a very balanced diet along with very little to none on booze/cigs ect. is very valuable for longevity and endurance as we age.
Yes, me and the GF still 'Bang-O-Clock' once a week---------->haha Giddy Up..
I'm almost 2 years out from having Covid (Late January 2020) it does affect your lungs/breathing and of course oxygen levels in your muscles. When I lap swim, I have to have the first lane or the last lane so if my breathing gets screwy, I can grab onto the side of the pool------in the deep end.
Keep the faith Hflyer,
3 years to go for me. If God allows I plan to hunt elk as long as I can. I don’t see an end in sight.